The size of the global security guarding and monitoring services industries in 2014 is projected to be more than $85 billion and has historically been growing at an annual rate of between four and seven percent per year.  The growth of the security guarding and monitoring services industry is strongly tied to increased public-sector outsourcing, GDP growth and in recent years adoption of surveillance technology to offer remote security services where security officers are used.  This is a great opportunity for all enterprise security leaders, surveillance manufacturers and security service companies to capitalize on the creation of higher valuable service offerings, which are now possible with remote video monitoring.


Network Enablement

The key enabler to remote monitoring is the IP network and IP-enabled devices. These network-based surveillance devices, such as encoders, cameras, door sensors and recorders, have been coming together as a solution for a number of years now. What have been gaining more adoption are game-changing high-definition cameras. With the maturity of these systems and high-definition capabilities are combing together to form new service offerings like remote video monitoring.  However, the typical surveillance systems integrator isn’t the one building these new service offerings – the guarding and monitoring industries are.


Intelligent Systems

As network-based security devices have advanced to the point of commoditization, device manufacturers have become more focused on adding intelligence in the form of automated monitoring and alerting capabilities.  These intelligent capabilities are not replacing security officers or monitoring personnel, but instead are making them more effective and capable of securing larger areas with fewer personnel, which can appeal to enterprise security leaders’ budgets. The use of video analytics is used to improve the accuracy of detection and to look for specific types of video motion that would be of interest.  Some examples include being able to detect crossing a virtual tripwire, wrong-way detection, or if an object dwells within an area longer than expected.  These efficiencies are fueling growth for the services industry because when the added networked-enablement is combined with intelligent systems, the overall service cost comes down for end users.


Remote Video Surveillance Concepts

There are several names for these guarding and monitoring services, but the most literal is “remote video surveillance,” which is exactly what it implies.  Remote personnel utilizing network-enabled video surveillance systems provide a wide range of services.  

The key to these remote video surveillance systems is the utilization of onsite high-tech network surveillance systems, which are used for detection, alarm triggers and remote notification.  These local video surveillance systems are integrated with other remote systems over an IP network, which are then used by remote operators or guarding operations in some way.  These detection systems can be simple cameras with video motion detection, audio detection devices or much more intelligent systems using video analytic technology.

When all of these high-tech systems come together they create the foundation for remote video surveillance concepts to create value. This isn’t a new business concept, but with the new technologies and intelligent systems, new value can be created from old services.


Traditional Basic Guarding

When you combine remote video surveillance concepts with basic guarding and monitoring, service costs can be dramatically reduced without lowering the service quality.  Some examples of basic guarding operations that can be replaced with remote video surveillance services are: remote identification and verification, remote tours, remote escorts and remote customer service via kiosk-like systems.


Solutions + Services

It is the inclusion of the remote video surveillance devices, technology and intelligent systems with a guarding and monitoring service into a combined contract that is showing exciting promise for security professionals. These multi-year combined contracts are creating many new opportunities for traditional guarding and monitoring service providers to build technology and device operational competencies which complement the typical systems integrator’s deployment capabilities.  This is creating a lot of new partnerships between service providers and systems integrators, which will be very healthy for the security industry and security leaders, proving that 1+1=3 within today’s high-tech security and services industry. 


About the Author:

 Keven Marier is the director of Large Account Business Development for Milestone Systems AS. He has a 20-year background in technology consulting, publishing and educating within the physical security technology and enterprise IT industries.